Welcome to the final week of the Simply Tuesday book club! To recap, so far we have been invited to
- make a bench, to sit down and acknowledge our smallness
- embrace our Tuesday work
- find our Tuesday people
- accept our Tuesday soul.
I have truly enjoyed reading this book and processing it on this blog. Hopefully you have gleaned a few insights that will help you to celebrate your smallness.
In this the final part (5 if you’re counting), we are encouraged to See beyond Tuesday: More love. Less fear.
In Chapter 13, Vision & Contentment: Learning to Let Love Lead, Emily Freeman starts out by telling about a recurring dream that she has, and I was astonished because I have the very same dream! I’m back in college, and realize that I had signed up for a class and the finals are that day, but I don’t know where the class is and I don’t have the books. Freeman uses it as an example of anxiety over not being prepared. Interestingly, I had a prophet tell me that in my case it means that God is telling me to do something and I need to find the courage.
I think that’s what Freeman is getting at later in the chapter when she writes, “Fear pushes both ways, you see–keeps you from doing things you might want to do and convinces you that you have to do things you don’t want to do.”
Providentially, the sermon I heard yesterday was about how we need not worry as God takes care of the sparrow. We need to do our part, yes, but trust God for those things over which we have no control. Worrying does nothing except add gray hairs to our head. Freeman puts it like this: “We don’t have to see the whole picture at once and we don’t have to forsake our small-moment lives. We don’t have to let the pace of a fast-moving world dictate how we plan our day or our life. Instead, we can bring these flashes together in the presence of Jesus just one at a time. We can chase the flash, gather the light, an take the next step that makes sense.”
Whew! I can do that. When life seems so overwhelming, when there are so many things I want to do, it helps to take a deep breath and ask God just for the next step. Freeman writes, “God speaks in the still, small whisper . . . continues to give us the glimpses we need to keep on going.”
In Chapter 14, Endings & Beginnings: Casting a Hopeful Vision for the Future, Freeman reminds us that “the littleness of starts is something to be celebrated and embraced, not despised and rejected.” She also reminds us that we shouldn’t embrace the small beginnings hoping that they actually turn out to have big endings. We need to remember that God uses small things too. Our ways are not His ways. This especially hit home as I’ve been contemplating this blogging thing. I have taken a few social media classes, worked to find my tribe, and even though I tell myself that I am doing this for a creative outlet, secretly (or I guess not so secretly now) I would love to see my numbers grow so that I can encourage more women to live life to the fullest, in freedom from the world’s expectations. But I don’t know if that’s God’s purpose. Perhaps it’s one or two people who will find encouragement on a day that they need it most. Who am I to say that a small result is not just as important?
Truthfully, I was sad to reach the final chapter, 15, Tuesday & Everything After: Living Well in Ordinary Time. I enjoyed reading this book so much. I have found myself referencing it in conversation, and using her analogies and handles to think about small things and recognize glimpses of the Kingdom. It was a great wrap-up. And as I read it on the airplane on the way to California, I decided that I wanted to continue living small. Of noticing.
How could I continue to encourage my readers to do the same? I had grand ideas, of classes, of coaching, but then I remembered SMALL. And so I created #takebacktuesday that will go from now until Thanksgiving, to help me remember each day to look for small glimpses and cultivate gratitude rather than jumping right into the Christmas season. I invite you to join me.